Much like how a sandwich that you get for free tastes better than any equivalent sandwiches that you had to fork over money for, games that you spend only a small amount of money on are usually more fun than one you paid full price for. Or is that just me? Perhaps it’s you as well. If so, here’s the bargain bucket. Dive in. For a constantly updated record of cheap digital entertainment software, I highly recommend you visit SavyGamer.co.uk.
MDK2HD – £4.80/€6.05/$7.50
That’s a serious commitment to just having letters and numbers for a game’s name. The “H” & the “D” stand for “High” & “Definition”, although they’re selling themselves short with that slightly disingenuous suffix, it’s not just got support for higher resolutions, it’s a total graphical overhaul, with shiny new models and environments. Adam thought the following:
MDK 2 has more style and personality than most games can dream of. It’s funny. It’s frequently frustrating. It’s more often exciting and breathless to play, and taking on the gigantic action puzzles and boss fights are rewarding battles to best. Most of all it’s a game confident in what it wants to do: have a laugh. Sure it’s sloppy around the edges, but it never really stops being a giggle. It’s a lighthearted sci fi comic book dream, and this HD re-release is a good a reason as any to return to its unique charms. It finally looks like the pulpy comic book it always wanted to be. Go on, have a go. You might just end up having some fun.
Read everything that he thought here.
Quantum Conundrum – £4.99
Also registers on Steam and also probably UK only.
Since the Portal comparison is inevitable, I guess the thing that I should say is that this is no way near as immediately compelling as Portal. Portal, once I’d started I could not put down. Quantum Conundrum I got bored quite quickly, and haven’t gone back (yet!). It probably gets better as you get into it though. Or does it? Here’s what Mr Meer had to say about it:
A solid kernel of admirable intelligence and noble inventiveness is orbited by misfiring tone, ill-suited twitch challenge and seeming arbitrary design decisions that block organic, euphoric player experimentation in favour of unyielding square hole, square peg solutions. I can see the game it wants to be, the game it’s trying to be, the game it almost is. And that upsets me dearly, as sailing close to greatness but falling at critical hurdles always does.
Hmm. More this way.
Binary Domain – £7.49/€9.99/$9.99
A third person shooter where you play as Size Five Games’ Dan Marshall, shooting robots in Japan. John said these words about it when he wrote down wot he thought:
There’s an awful lot more going on here than in the average third-person shooter, while it falls miles short of Mass Effect. But then I never required it to reach that. Of the six or so characters that accompany you, two are vaguely interesting. And the story, in the final hour (of about 12 or so) finally becomes something a bit more novel, at last introducing an idea of its own, rather than recycling everyone else’s. But even this is bogged down in major decisions made in cutscenes (perhaps dictated by trust levels? I’ve no idea, and I’m buggered if I’m playing through it again to find out), and ultimately a really stupid and dull final moment.
The rest is located here.
The Witcher – £2.38/€2.72/$3.40
Someone going by the name “Kieron Gillen” did something called a “review” of this on a website than can only possibly be referred to as “Eurogamer”. He said things like this:
The new and improved package is increasingly attractive. There are still some rough edges, and moments of genuine drama are still undercut by how they’re performed, but this is an agreeably driven RPG in an agreeably ornate package. I also believe the developers’ continued support for the game and commitment to expensive improvements should be applauded.
Continue reading over here.
Deal of the week
Deus Ex: Human Revolution – £4.99
Registers on Steam and probably UK only.
Everybody’s favourite home appliance throwing simulator. DXHR is first person game about shooting, hiding and talking in a future where biomechanical augmentations have eradicated all colours except black and gold from the visible spectrum, and it’s your job to save the day and watch cutscenes where your character does stupid shit. It’s quite good, and largely true to the spirit of the original Deus Ex, even if it’s slightly less ambitious and there’s a few significant stumbles along the way. For a fiver, give it a shot. Here’s wot John thinks.
Also of note:
A few hours left on the latest Indie Royale bundle.
Latest “Indie” Gala bundle.
The Darkness II – £7.99/€10.08/$12.49
Batman: Arkham City – £6.99/€6.99/$6.99
Civilization V – £5.99/€8.99/$8.99
Legacy of Kain: Soul Reaver 2 – £2.99
Legacy of Kain: Defiance – £2.99
Titan Quest – £2.49/€2.49/$3.74
GOG TopWare promo.
SavyGamer.co.uk is where the cheap games live throughout the week.